Halford Picks 10 Albums That Changed His Life

Cream, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix and Queen among Judas Priest man's most important records.

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Rob Halford has discussed 10 albums that changed his life, including Jimi Hendrix and David Bowie in his list.

The Judas Priest frontman gave his choices to MusicRadar (via Metal Hammer) and also named albums by the Beatles and Alice Cooper.

His top pick was "Electric Ladyland" by the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Halford says: "Listening to this music at the time it was being made is something I'll never forget.

"Simply because of the sheer audacity of this extraordinary guitar player and artist. He made the room light up so vividly. To listen to the sounds that he made with the electric guitar was unbelievably special.

"Things were changing at this time. The music in general was getting louder. Marshall amps were being made, speaker cabinets were being used - everything was getting bigger, louder, more impactful. I think Jimi had something to do with that."

He also praises "Led Zeppelin II," describing it as the "roots of heavy metal." Halford adds: "When I heard the riffs that Jimmy was doing, I got a real sense of where things were going. Even though Led Zeppelin never expressed, 'We've got some heavy metal in us,' it's quite apparent that it was there all along.

"The riffage and the way they played live - they were a bit like Cream on steroids. John Bonham smashed those drums, and along with the powerful musicianship of Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, they made a sound that was simply incredible. And then you've got Robert Plant, screaming and wailing in a way we'd never heard before. Led Zeppelin were such an important band."

He continues: "The music that touches you in your youth is magnified as you get older. Each record can be a virtual time machine - all you need is to hear a second or two and you go back to that place and time when you first heard it. It's a brilliant feeling when music touches you so profoundly and stays with you through time."

The 10 records that changed Rob Halford's life:

1. The Jimi Hendrix Experience – "Electric Ladyland"
2. Cream – "Disraeli Gears"
3. The Beatles – "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"
4. Led Zeppelin – "Led Zeppelin II"
5. David Bowie – "The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars"
6. King Crimson – "In the Court of the Crimson King"
7. The Rolling Stones – "Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out"
8. John Mayall – "Blues From Laurel Canyon"9. Alice Cooper – "Billion Dollar Babies"10. Queen – "Queen"

What albums would be in your list?

41 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I always considered Queen's first two albums to be their strongest but don't see them mentioned as often as their more popular works. Nice to see it here.
    While not being bad albums at all, it was evident some sort of "mainstream" approach in their later works. Their first 2 albums were more raw and "genuine" to call it in some way
    "The music that touches you in your youth is magnified as you get older. Each record can be a virtual time machine - all you need is to hear a second or two and you go back to that place and time when you first heard it." - Well said, Rob.
    Led Zeppelin III. Angel Dust. Graceland. VAST. Amorica. Lateralus. Imprint. Fuzzy. Metallica. Nirvana Unplugged in New York. Wish I could add more..
    +1 for Angel Dust! That album for me is the #1 album of the 90s.
    The Judist
    Yep. The cacophony created by the accordions on the opening track sent a shiver down my spine. The way the fretless bass was announced after the crack of the snare taught me alot about orchestration and building suspense. Also the lyrical content through the record was absolutely stuffed with powerful imagery that appealed to my 8 yr old self. Considering that with the political connotations surrounding south Africa, and the furore the record caused it was, for me, a life changing record.
    I can't disagree with his top 6!
    Black Sabbath - Paranoid?
    Judas Priest formed at about the same time as Black Sabbath and they're pretty much peers.
    By that logic, so is Alice Cooper. Billion Dollar Babies wasn't released until '73, and Priest didn't release their first album until '74, whereas Paranoid was released in 1970.
    Yeah, there is a difference between when the debut was released, but there is one year difference between the actual foundation of the bands. (I remember that even according to some sources JP was a year earlier.) And either way I've read quite a few times Rob mentioning they've always been on good terms and cooperated from time to time. Priest played War Pigs as intro tape in their Epitaph shows after all...
    Well Sabbath put their first album out not long after Zeppelin. Not sure I see your point here.
    And actually, Sabbath's first and second albums were released about 13 months after the same from Zeppelin.
    I would have guessed Its Raining Men would have been on there. Or at least some Village People.
    See, it's funny because he's gay, and gay is funny because... uh... still working on how that makes any sense.
    How about REVOLVER? Or Abbey Road?
    Why would any idiot downvote this? I swear some serious idiots here. Downvote this if you want too. IDGAF
    Yet you commented on people down-voting you. So, you do give a ****
    You're being downvoted because it's his f*cking list. Why should you dictate which albums are the most important to him?
    the one thing i think that made the biggest impact on his life as a vocalist, is all the training he's done as a kid, signing to mask the sound of him wankin' it to playdudes. he realized he had a high pitched screech once he started using his mom's hairbrush in the ol' cornhole.
    I honestly can't tell if you're trying to be funny but have no sense of humor or if you actually think that enough people will be on board with your junior high caliber homophobia that your "joke" was worth posting. Either way, Halford is an amazing vocalist and it's really cool to see a list of albums that influenced him. Manovvar - Thinking like that will unite you with a very sad, very lonely life soon enough... if it hasn't already.
    I don't know about you mate, but I clicked on the link to see what albums inspired songs like painkiller and breaking the law, not to see whether the list comprised of things he inserted rectally.
    my 10: Rust in peace, Lateralus, Throwing copper, Fat of the Land, South of heaven, 10,000 days, Aenima, A guide to better living, Welcome to sky valley, Thirteenth Step. Never get sick of TooL